Friday, July 17, 2015

Age of Sigmar not Doing Well

I get the feeling that Age of Sigmar is not setting the world on fire in terms of sales.  I personally turned down a set at 35%+ off from a friend.  Maybe he has a sweet heart connection with someone with a trade account but normally that type of discount is not openly advertised unless someone really needs to move some boxes.  I also see that the Limited Edition Age of Sigmar book which is supposed to come out tomorrow is still not sold out.  It is only like 2000 copies for the whole world and they are not even at the point where they say less than X left.  This stuff used to sell out in a few days.  Now if this is not the raging success GW wants what lessions will they "learn".  Probably that free rules are bad.

I hear that they pushed this hard on the retailers.  This is essentially a new game where you have alienated a sizable percentage of the WFB existing players.  You can hope that maybe some 40K players come in to fill that whole but you probably need a slow burn to build up a player base so modest expectations were probably the way to go.  Retailers with a large inventory of unsold AoS boxes will have less money to stock the newer releases to support the players that did buy but I guess GW does not care to much about that since you can always go to their webstore.  Getting retailers to buy it in large initial might help their numbers in the short term as they get to book that income but not a winning idea over the long term.

The release also puts sales of existing WFB stuff in an interesting place.  Due to the scale change the game really only has 2 factions with no one else to go with it.  You can use old models if you had them, but I would be hard pressed to think it was a great idea to invest heavily in new WFB boxes as those models will seem strange rather fast as GW updates the ranges.  I could see a small purchase to mesh an existing force with the new rules but hard to visualize starting a new army.  If they focus on AoS they can get a partial update of all the forces in about a year but that is really just a few kits for each and some characters.  It certainly cannot replace the depth in the current line.  Definitely encourages a wait and see approach which is not good for GW sales. GW is playing the long game here though, if they can essentially make all the existing fantasy miniatures out of date it certain cuts down the competition from the secondary market.

If you guy by a FLGS sometime soon let me know how many copies they have on display at the moment compared to the 40K starter box.  It is all relative though.  Most game copies would kill to pull the sales AoS is doing but GW needs to book 15 Million dollars of sales a month to tread water essentially.


  1. It's hard to say what GW's plan is with this. If they're smart they're in it for the long haul and know it's going to be a very bumpy start.

    I feel if they were upfront with what they were doing and took a more standard approach to releasing a new game that they'd have started off better. By that I mean, spending months and months slowly slipping new information and warming people up to the idea. If you have a new game, which this is by all rights, then you don't just dump it out there without marketing prior to release. Sure, they'd still have pissed off WHFB players but they'd have time to come to terms with it and some, as they are now, come around to the idea. That way the release would have had bigger sales than letting the release be the points in which old players learned their fate.

    If there's one things that hurts GW more than anything, in my opinion, it's the lack of marketing strategy they've shown over the past few years. The whole "surprise!" approach has not proven fruitful for them and yet they continue to do it. My knowledge of business is seriously limited yet even I know that without proper marketing even the best products fail.

    1. I agree. So much so that I wrote a post about the idea behind their marketing plans.